Incentives have been a critical element of school fundraising for decades. A top-earning class can win anything from the classic pizza party or ice-cream day to school excursions. But, an increasing number of teachers and schools are looking to cut back on additional expense, and so this question that continues to be raised is: Do incentives actually work?
This question has been addressed many, many times with conflicting results. PTOtoday.com published an article entitled, Fundraising Incentives: Create Excitement, Meet Your Goals. Author Evelyn Beck dives into the school fundraising world to determine once and for all whether incentives are necessary for a fundraisers success. She also assesses the type of incentive involved, big and small. Her general findings were: “It’s clear that incentives do motivate kids, and, increasingly, parent groups are finding new and creative ways to incorporate them into their overall fundraising strategy.”
We tend to agree with this opinion and believe that you have a greater chance of a fundraiser’s success if an incentive is involved. Even a small one. It keeps the spirit of the fundraiser alive.
We’ve complied for a list of factors that will help you to implement incentives successfully :
1. Play around with different incentive ideas. Don’t fall into a rut by choosing the same incentive for every fundraiser, every year.
2. Promote your incentive during school assembly. Kids are more likely to get excited when they hear about it altogether.
3. Give out incentives while the fundraiser is still going on. It gives the fundraiser that extra steam to push along.
4. Get the principal involved. Fun promises from the principal (like dyeing his hair school colors) can be a big motivator for students.
5. Offer incentives to teachers for class participation.
6. Publicize the winners on your school’s website and in school newsletter.